Yale’s holdings hit two-year peak

The total value of securities Yale holds in its own name is the highest reported in a quarterly filing in two years, according to a report the University filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Aug. 13.

The total value of the securities rose to over $338 million, the highest since a report filed in August 2002. It rose $60,757,000 since the last filing, in May.

Since Yale holds more than $100 million worth of securities in its own name, University Chief Investment Officer David Swensen is required by the SEC to list those investments in a quarterly filing called a 13(f) report. The vast majority of the University’s investments are controlled by outside managers and are not listed on the form, but the report can give some glimpse of Yale’s general investment strategy.

The Yale Investments Office declined to comment about this specific filing, but it provided the News with a letter written in general about 13(f) filings.

“The list of securities shown on a 13(f) filing is not representative of Yale’s investments,” the letter states.

Securities listed on the report include money managed internally by the Investments Office, those formerly controlled by terminated managers and gifts to the University, according to the letter.

The time it takes to liquidate certain securities, along with restrictions imposed by donors or the SEC itself, can cause the University to hold securities on the list for significant periods of time, the letter states.

The forms list only those securities Yale holds in its own name on the day the reports are filed.

The largest of the new investments listed on the page is also the largest investment listed on the report. The University holds over $77 million worth of iShares in the Morgan Stanley Capital International Emerging Markets Free Index. iShares are traded on the stock market but are shares of a portfolio tracking a market index rather than shares of a company.

Two of the other new securities are in companies in the financial field, with $249,000 invested in Doral Financial Corporation, a mortgage company, and over $3.9 million in Alliance Data Systems Corporation, which creates private label credit cards. Alliance Data Systems had previously appeared on a 13(f) report filed in November 2003.

Yale also holds securities in three health-related companies. The largest investment in a health care company is about $2.3 million in Stericycle, Inc., which, according to a company press release, is the country’s leading provider of medical waste management. Stericycle’s revenues were up 9.4 percent last quarter compared the same quarter last year, the release said.

The University also invested in the medical information Web site WebMD Corporation, with a buy of over $1.5 million, and Pharmion Corporation, a pharmaceutical company that produces medicines concerned with blood disorders and cancer. Pharmion had its initial public offering last November.

The remaining new stock is $860,00 worth of AT&T Wireless Services Incorporated, the mobile phone company.

Two securities, the advertising agency Digitas Incorporated and SPDR, a security designed to track the S&P 500, no longer appeared on the report. Both were listed for the first time in Yale’s previous filing.

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